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Defects of Modern Christianity.
RADICAL MISCONCEPTION AS TO THE NATURE
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into
the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father.”—MATTHEW vii. 21.
W E are, in a sense, too familiar with the
W Bible. No doubt the fact that its words have fallen upon our ears from our earliest childhood, has connected them in our minds with a number of associations which are of great and almost priceless value. But, on the other hand, the very same repetition which tends to produce and increase these associations, tends at the same time to obscure the full and exact meaning of the words themselves. The New Testament abounds in expressions which would
startle us if we were to hear them now for the first time; but as it is, they have little or no effect. We have heard them so often that we think we must understand them, and therefore we never attempt to analyse or fathom their significance. Take, for example, such sentences as these : “Labour not for the meat which perisheth.” “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth.” “Seek ye first the kingdom of God.” “He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.” “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, ye have no life in you.” “If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.” “Whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.” I propose to speak to you this Lent about some of the defects of modern Christianity. I want you to contrast the Christianity of Christ with the Christianity of Christendom, Christianity as it is with Christianity as it should be, Christianity as it is frequently misrepresented and misunderstood with Christianity as it is described in the words of its divine Founder. It is manifest, of course, that everything which